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November 24, 2014


Top Story

6 'Friendsgiving' tips that won't leave you stuffed

(BPT) - If your family is far away, going home for the holidays isn’t always possible around Thanksgiving. Hectic work schedules and the high cost and hassle of traveling can make it difficult for everyone you love to be in the same place at the same time.

  • icon Posted: November 20

Recent Headlines

Thursday 11/20/2014
What You Need to Know to Protect Your Home and Wallet from Weather Events
Updated: November 20, 2014 - 3:33 am

(StatePoint) Whether you like to hibernate all winter or you enjoy hitting the slopes, don’t forget to be prepared for power outages, especially this year, as the “Old Farmer’s Almanac,” known for accurately forecasting weather since 1792, is calling for the “worst winter in years.”

Three Ways to Give the Holiday Season More Meaning
Updated: November 20, 2014 - 3:33 am

(StatePoint) These days, the focus of the holidays is often on consumerism -- from gift cards to glitzy décor to formal place settings. Whatever your religious beliefs, you may be looking for ways to incorporate more spirituality into the season and beyond.

Wednesday 11/19/2014
Holiday shoppers have more money to spend than they think
Updated: November 24, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - Having a happy holiday shouldn’t mean stretching your finances paper thin. But many Americans already know they’ll likely go over their holiday budgets this year, which can mean financial stress in the new year. Fortunately, a few unexpected tricks and shopping strategies can help make your holiday dollars go further – and you might even have a few bucks leftover for yourself.

Don't let hitchhiking pests spoil your holiday season
Updated: November 24, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - As the days get shorter and a wintry chill sets in across the country, families are beginning to prepare their homes for the most wonderful time of the year.

Tuesday 11/18/2014
Looking for holiday gifts they'll still love next year? Go traditional, not tech
Updated: November 24, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - Popular wisdom would have you believe that the best holiday gift must have a battery, a touch screen and wireless capability. Technology gifts, however, rarely stand the test of time. Give your loved one a smartphone or tablet in December and it may already be obsolete by spring. What’s more, market research firm MarketTools found 14 percent of us return consumer electronic gifts after the holidays.

Monday 11/17/2014
Holiday shopping? Scammers hope you'll send them money for online purchases
Updated: November 24, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - This holiday season, will you be one of the 197 million Americans to shop online, according to eMarketer? Holiday shoppers will go online to buy everything from gift cards to cars, flat screen TVs to smartphones. And at least some of them will have their holiday spirit dampened by scammers who use a variety of schemes to convince victims to send money for a bogus purchase.

It's better to give than to receive: 5 ways you can give back this season
Updated: November 24, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - What are you thankful for this season? Your loved ones? Your health? Your possessions? You probably have plenty of reasons to feel thankful but in your community and around the world there are others who may not be as fortunate, and need the help of those willing to give, especially during the holiday season. So if you’re ready to give back this year, here are 5 ways you can help people in your local area and beyond.

No sneeze reprieve: Surprising cool-weather allergy triggers
Updated: November 24, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - When the weather cools and fall arrives, do you sigh in relief, assuming your allergies will settle down until spring? Don’t let your guard down so soon – fall and winter present unique risks for people with allergies and asthma.

Three simple ways to kick the stress out of holiday shopping
Updated: November 24, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - Traveling, cooking large meals, planning and surviving holiday office parties, and managing relatives – the holidays are stressful. Add in the time and money demands of holiday shopping, and you may be tempted to keep a therapist on speed dial.

Sunday 11/16/2014
Sweeteners 101: Your guide to baking with sweeteners this holiday season
Updated: November 23, 2014 - 3:32 am

(BPT) - With so many sweeteners on the market today, it’s hard to know what to buy. This holiday season is a great time to learn about sweeteners and get creative in kitchen. Understand the various natural sweeteners and what their benefits are, as well as the recipes where they work best to make your holiday dishes pop.

Friday 11/14/2014
Fail-safe tricks for creating the perfect cheese platter
Updated: November 21, 2014 - 3:34 am

(BPT) - Your social calendar is packed to the brim with dinner parties, family activities and holiday festivities with loved ones. Whether you are hosting or attending as a guest, providing something delectable will always be a welcome addition to the celebration. Loved around the world, a scrumptious cheese platter is guaranteed to tempt everyone’s palate and be the perfect conversation starter.

5 clever time-saving gift ideas for busy people
Updated: November 21, 2014 - 3:34 am

(BPT) - Time isn’t just a commodity during the busy holiday season – it’s precious all year long. While you can’t give actual time to your friends and family, you can give gifts that help them save time and streamline their busy days. Here are five gift ideas that will help open-up time for your loved ones.

Thursday 11/13/2014
How to make sure cleaning up isn't your only holiday activity
Updated: November 20, 2014 - 3:33 am

(BPT) - The holidays are upon us. It’s time for friends and family to gather, houseguests to move in, and marathon cooking and baking sessions to begin. Before any of these activities can start, and certainly once all of them are finished, there’s plenty of cleaning up to do.

Last-minute entertaining tricks for unexpected guests
Updated: November 20, 2014 - 3:33 am

(BPT) - The holiday season is a time for joy, giving and, at times, unexpected guests. For even the most unanticipated of visitors, it is wise to always be ready to share the season’s cheer with a nice hot cup of coffee, freshly-baked cookies and a welcoming home.

Dermatologist shares skin care tips for the changing seasons
Updated: November 20, 2014 - 3:33 am

(BPT) - Skin changes with the seasons and it is important for women to adjust their daily skin care routine throughout the year. During fall and winter, low temperatures, low humidity and brisk winds deplete skin of its natural nutrients, which can lead to a dry, lackluster appearance. It is much easier to prevent dryness and irritation than it is to alleviate it, so now is the best time for women to start changing their routine before the weather becomes even colder.

Wednesday 11/12/2014
How to shop for Cyber Monday deals [Infographic]
Posted: November 12, 2014

(BPT) - A new national Cyber Monday shopping survey from found that shoppers think Cyber Monday deals rank second best, just behind Black Friday deals. Everyone is looking for great deals this holiday season, but also think the convenience of being able to shop from home or the office is important. The infographic below reveals what Cyber Monday shoppers are planning to purchase, when they will shop and how they will save while checking off their holiday shopping list. Visit to compare and shop for all the top stores’ Cyber Monday and Black Friday deals in one money-saving resource.

Festive tips to deck your table for the holidays
Updated: November 19, 2014 - 3:34 am

(BPT) - ‘Tis the season for holiday entertaining. Icy shades of glistening white, sophisticated naturals and dazzling rhinestones top the hottest design trends in tableware and collectibles for the 2014 winter holidays.

Tips to keep your pets happy and safe this holiday season
Updated: November 19, 2014 - 3:34 am

(BPT) - The holidays are often an exciting but hectic time filled with parties, travel and social obligations. If you’re among the 68 percent of Americans who own a pet it can be tough to figure out how to keep your pet anxiety-free and happy during the holiday hustle and bustle.

The only secret you need to know for successful holiday meal planning
Updated: November 19, 2014 - 3:34 am

(BPT) - You don’t need the juggling skills of a big-top performer in order to host a successful holiday gathering. Careful planning, time management and an eye for adding quick and easy ‘homemade’ touches will make your gathering one for the memory books, while still having plenty of time to enjoy the company of your guests. Don’t let poor planning leave you cooped up in a hot kitchen while everyone else revels in the joys of the season.

A quick, 3-step energy audit could save you big bucks this winter
Updated: November 19, 2014 - 3:34 am

(BPT) - If you are winterizing your home to protect against the headache of frozen pipes and potential water damage, conducting a quick, three-step energy audit now can help prevent nasty surprises when the heating bill arrives.

Tuesday 11/11/2014
Keep your home comfortable for the holidays
Updated: November 18, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - Holidays make for hectic homes. With family and friends coming in and out, overnight guests staying for days at a time and holiday celebrations going on, it’s hard enough to keep up with it all, much less keep your home comfortable and welcoming for all who spend time there. Here are some tips for keeping everyone in your home as comfortable as possible over the holidays - including you.

The importance of maintaining family traditions through the holidays
Updated: November 18, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - Holiday celebrations are a time for family, food, and fun. Part of what makes each holiday a special occasion are the family traditions that are celebrated and passed down each year.

Are you sneezing your way through 'the most wonderful time of the year?'
Updated: November 18, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - You don’t want to be a Scrooge - you really don’t - but every year at the holidays you wonder why your “seasonal” allergies are still bothering you. Why are you sneezing, wheezing and coughing while everyone else is caroling, sleighing and making snowmen?

Tools to help you tackle home-related projects (or disasters)
Updated: November 18, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - The life of a homeowner is unpredictable. It is inevitable you will encounter necessary home fixes and even an occasional disaster. From storm-damaged roofs and extended power outages to a cabinet door ready to fall off its hinges, it’s important to fix issues quickly before they become a hazard to your family, pets or visitors.

Save time and energy with a family gift this holiday season
Updated: November 18, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - One of the best ways to celebrate the holidays is with a family gift – one that brings a couple or a family even closer.

Monday 11/10/2014
Separate the fruit from the cake: How to manage your weight and still enjoy the holidays
Updated: November 17, 2014 - 3:37 am

(BPT) - The holidays are here and for most people this is a busy and celebratory time. It’s a chance to reconnect with old friends and family you may not see the rest of the year, celebrate the season, exchange gifts, and share stories over dinner or dessert.

Deter deer damage: 8 facts you need to know about deer during the cold-weather season
Updated: November 17, 2014 - 3:37 am

(BPT) - While humans prepare for cold weather, deer have something else in mind when temperatures drop. Cold weather signifies mating season for deer. Numerous insurance industry and government studies indicate that during this time, deer become more active, aggressive and a greater threat to humans, pets and suburban landscapes.

Thursday 11/06/2014
Saving money on your holiday shopping list
Updated: November 13, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - The holidays can get expensive, especially if you have a large list of family and friends to shop for, or if you are planning to host a party or two. There are some ways, however, that you can save money this year and potentially make your planning for the season a bit easier as well.

Wednesday 11/05/2014
Beyond the bow: Experiential and motivational gifting trends in 2014
Updated: November 12, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - Do you want to give more than a present that gets a smile and then ends-up stored in a closet? This year, people have a new mindset for holiday giving and it embraces the idea that gifts can help motivate people to do the things they have always wanted to do. From tools that help someone complete their first marathon to activities that bring the family together, consider these gift ideas with greater meaning for the jolliest holiday yet.

Handling holiday messes: Faster germ busting and dealing with decoration disasters
Updated: November 12, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - Red wine and turkey gravy in the carpet, pine needles on the hardwood floor and the powder room that will see a visit from every sneezy guest that comes through the door – along with all that good cheer, the holiday season has its share of messes. Making matters worse, you probably have less time for cleaning during the holidays than any other season in the year.

Tuesday 11/04/2014
Indulging in a bite of pie and taking a nap could keep you healthy this holiday season
Updated: November 11, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - The holiday season is full of celebrations. From office parties to family events, everyone gathers to spread a little extra cheer. While people may be wary of what all of the holiday treats will mean for their health, avoiding all of the revelry could cause more harm than good.  Creating a balance between restraint and indulgence will help sustain physical, mental and emotional well-being. Come out of the holiday season feeling just as good as you did when you went in with these easy tips.

8 moving ways to make Veterans Day meaningful for kids
Updated: November 11, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - Her grandfather fought in World War II, her father in Vietnam and her college boyfriend in Desert Storm. Her best friend of 30 years was a Navy recruiter. Yet when Vivian Wall’s two young children asked why they should care about Veterans Day, she was unsure how to communicate its significance.

Give holiday dishes a flavorful twist with gourmet cheese
Updated: November 11, 2014 - 3:35 am

(BPT) - Winter holidays conjure up cravings for our favorite comfort foods - from the aroma of fresh-baked apple pie to the taste of tender roast turkey. This year, give holiday recipes a delectable new twist by incorporating the flavors of imported gourmet cheeses.

Monday 11/03/2014
Tips to Stay Safe in Winter Weather
Updated: November 03, 2014 - 3:36 am

(StatePoint) Winter weather can bring with it the potential for slippery steps, power outages and other seasonal hazards. By being prepared in advance, you can weather the storm more comfortably and safely.

7 great Thanksgiving gifts for the hostess with the mostest
Updated: November 10, 2014 - 3:36 am

(BPT) - Let’s face it: Whoever hosts Thanksgiving has a lot of work to do, no matter how big of a party it is. Whether you’re attending a Thanksgiving celebration in person or celebrating in spirit with friends and family who are far away, show your thanks by sending a hostess gift. Here are seven ideas guaranteed to make a world-class impression by going beyond just a bottle of wine.

Tips to get your winter fashions in prime wearing condition
Updated: November 10, 2014 - 3:36 am

(BPT) - Sweater weather. Boot season. Whatever you call it, it’s time to say “farewell” to flowing summer dresses and “hello” to cozy sweaters, comfy sweatshirts, luxurious scarves, and stylish boots, because winter fashions are finally in season. To revamp your winter wardrobe for the colder temperatures ahead, consider these tips to make the transition easier.

The key to an easy, stress-free and great Thanksgiving: a to-go feast
Updated: November 10, 2014 - 3:36 am

(BPT) - More than half of all Americans will feast on takeout this Thanksgiving, according to the National Restaurant Association. It’s easy to guess why. All the things we love about takeout – such as convenience and time-savings – are doubly valuable during the busy holiday season.

Saturday 11/01/2014
New Trends in Holiday Shopping This Year
Updated: November 01, 2014 - 3:33 am

(StatePoint) Whether it’s a husband buying yoga pants for his wife, a daughter looking for fly fishing supplies for her dad, or a childless uncle looking for gifts for nieces and nephews, consumers tend to stray from their retail comfort zones during the holiday season in pursuit of the perfect gift for loved ones.

Tips for Beating the Winter Blues
Updated: November 01, 2014 - 3:33 am

(StatePoint) Sniffles and flu are not the only afflictions of winter. Many people find that the dark and cold days can impact their mood. In fact, seasonal affective disorder (SAD) affects approximately 10 million Americans, and another 10 to 20 percent of the public may have mild SAD, according to Psychology Today.

5 simple steps for protecting your home during the holidays
Updated: November 08, 2014 - 3:33 am

(BPT) - When you think of the holidays, celebrations, presents and friends likely come to mind - not crime. Unfortunately, burglaries increase at this time of year, and your home could be a target. With a few simple safety precautions, you can protect your property, your family and your valuables now and well into the new year.

Friday 10/31/2014
Restless legs syndrome: It's 'no laughing matter'
Updated: November 07, 2014 - 3:34 am

(BPT) - A creepy-crawly feeling. An irresistible urge to move your legs. The inability to sit still for long periods of time. These are common complaints of those living with moderate-to-severe restless leg syndrome (RLS), a progressive and chronic condition that affects 2-3 percent of U.S. adults.

8 ways to protect the value of your car this winter
Updated: November 07, 2014 - 3:34 am

(BPT) - Your car is one of your most prized possessions. It’s your road-trip partner, your chauffer each morning and your home away from home when you’re on the go. Because you depend on your car for so much, you want to protect and keep it running as long as possible.

Thursday 10/30/2014
10 healthy strategies to survive the holidays
Updated: November 06, 2014 - 3:34 am

(BPT) - The holidays are a wonderful time of year. A chance to see old friends and distant relatives, take a vacation or just put the stresses of everyday life behind you so you can focus solely on family and fun. If you’re trying to manage your weight, though, holiday activities can come with a cost if you give in to the treats of the season.

Wednesday 10/29/2014
Simple steps to make your holiday guests feel at home
Updated: November 05, 2014 - 3:34 am

(BPT) - The holiday season makes for a memorable time of year, providing the chance to visit with old friends and relatives you might not see often. Equipping yourself with the right tools early on can be the key to enjoying a stress-free hosting experience this season, while ensuring your guests’ visit is as comfortable as possible. Following these simple tips will help you create a welcoming home so you can spend more time doing the things you enjoy most.

Holiday survival guide: quick tricks to eliminate hassles and headaches
Updated: November 05, 2014 - 3:34 am

(BPT) - ‘Tis the season for family gatherings, dinner parties, gift exchanges and the sound of laughter coming from around the table. With the hustle and bustle surrounding the holidays, finding ways to reduce stress can help you survive the season. Here are six simple tips that will help your holidays go from hectic to holly and jolly, with even a little time left over to relax before your guests start arriving.

Timely, budget-friendly solutions for getting your house ready for the holidays
Updated: November 05, 2014 - 3:34 am

(BPT) - The fun chaos of the holidays is right around the corner. Family gatherings to plan, delicious meals to prepare, gifts to find and purchase, and a house to decorate ... the list goes on!

Four ways to spark creativity in your children
Updated: November 05, 2014 - 3:34 am

(BPT) - As colder months roll in, your children will spend more time indoors so you'll need to be equipped with indoor activities that will capture their imagination and foster their creativity. Here are a few activities you can do with your kids and keep them active:

Monday 10/27/2014
Inspiration for a simple and delicious Thanksgiving
Updated: November 03, 2014 - 3:36 am

(BPT) - Thanksgiving is all about abundance. It’s a time when Americans pull out the stops to celebrate everything they have to be thankful for with a big, delicious meal that will leave everyone at the table saying “Wow!”

Simple ways to bust winter blues
Updated: November 03, 2014 - 3:36 am

(BPT) - Shorter days, colder weather, icy roads, and less sunshine – winter can be a serious downer. It’s not just in your head, either; 14 percent of Americans suffer from the winter blues and 6 percent have the more serious form of doldrums known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), according to research published in the journal Psychiatry.

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